I often find my writing a little awkward, out of place even, this time of year in the blogosphere. This year doesn't seem to be much of an exception.
I have no looking back post to share. No collection of 2012's top posts, a play by play of what we did this year, or chief lessons learned in all that doing.
No looking forward post either. No word of the year or New Year's Resolutions.
Out with the old. In with the new. That's the mantra these days.
But my life seems to follow a different rhythm this time of year. A delayed rhythm.
The week of Christmas and into New Years is a big holiday time in our family. We're not Americans, we don't do Thanksgiving in November. Our big holiday is Christmas. And it's not big because we give lots of gifts and spend lots of money (except perhaps on the years we travel). It's big because between Christmas and New Year's Day is when we take our long winter break from regular life.
This year we hosted my parents and then friends for seven full days. Damien and I both took breaks from writing, income earning work, and even breaks from the kitchen as other people pitched in and helped out.
The time with my parents was all about Christmas and being together. The time with our friends was all about being together and skiing.
Three days straight of skiing. Home to eat, sleep, dry our gear, and pack the lunch.
I have not been thinking about the New Year (ok, maybe just a wee teensy bit while driving to our mountain ski destination) or even reflecting on this past year. I've just been present in my life. Here in body, mind and spirit soaking it all in. And I'll be totally honest, struggling with some of my own issues (I'll talk about those in my next post).
I am not starting January 2013 with lists, words, or intentions.
I am starting the New Year with warm memories and lots of photos of a fabulous Christmas week, ending last night with the invitation to our neighbor's just-built ski house. Neighbors who ski (obviously), neighbors with a bunch of kids - oh happy day for our own brood out here in the woods. Neighbors who are interesting, kind, and hospitable.
I am starting the New Year with dirty floors, dirty bathrooms and an empty fridge. The sign of hospitality given.
I am starting the New Year with lots of snow and a rough schedule with my husband how we might ski three days a week this winter.
I am starting the New Year with a tree still up and decorations hung.
I am starting the New Year with tired kids. Happy, tired kids. Rest and a lot of vegetables are in order for the next few days.
I am starting the New Year a little bit tired myself, but not worn down.
I gave myself the day off yesterday. Instead of cleaning (like I will do today) and planning (like I will do later this week and into next), I read - for hours. I read on the couch. I read while eating leftovers for lunch. I read in the bath tub.
I cried with the book. I cried for the ending of good things. I cried about my insecurities. And then we spent the evening celebrating with new friends.
And walked back home again under the starlit sky and went to bed, under the flannels, a little before midnight.
Now this morning I'm at my favorite winter writing perch. My first morning writing session in over one week. Watching the birds at the feeder. Wondering if the squirrel will come again or if that Airsoft gun Damien bought and used yesterday to scare it away did the trick.
The fire is crackling downstairs. The kitchen is dirty and so are the floors. Damien plans to ski again this afternoon. Maybe the kids will join him. The neighbor kids might come to sled.
Happy New Year.